Conduit by Liam Cairns | Script Revolution


The victim of a terrible crime arrives at her local police station to identify the culprit but is instead forced into punishing the man using an electroshock torture device.



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Samantha Ellis, a young lady in her mid twenties, has arrived at her local police station under the pretence of identifying the man that robbed her. Enter Detective Inspector Young and Police Constable Milgram, the two officers assigned to her case. After explaining that they have a suspect in custody, and having her sign some release forms, Milgram leads Samantha into an observation room decked out with a CCTV monitor and a curious metal box with a voltage meter and a row of buttons adorned on its surface.

She is instructed to take a seat by the metal box and look at the monitor. On screen, Samantha can see a young man, Harry Dawkins, seated in another room with wires attached to his arm. DI Young enters the frame and, sitting opposite the suspect, begins to interrogate him. For each unacceptable answer given, Samantha is ordered to push a button, starting from the far left button. Each time she presses one, Harry is given an electric shock, the voltage increased incrementally with each button.

At first, Samantha is overjoyed, believing that this is much deserved payback. But then the voltage reaches the hundreds. Harry suffers internal bleeding and vomits blood onto the table. Overcome with the consequences of her actions, Samantha tries to flee, only to be restrained by Milgram. He reminds her of the papers she previously signed; they were a government contract incriminating her in this interrogation and, should she refuse to continue, she will be prosecuted and given a penal sentence.

Meanwhile, Harry is extended an olive branch. Should he sign a confession, he will be shown leniency and reduced prison time (albeit time that must be carried out in a middle eastern country). Young offers his pen. Harry spits blood all over the paper, sealing his fate.

In the control room, an impatient Milgram pressgangs Samantha into pushing the final button...

CONDUIT was written and directed by yours truly as my thesis project in film school. It was an official selection for the Visions Festival of 2013 held on the De Havilland Campus in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, UK.

Attached Talent: 

Anna Nicholson as Samantha Ellis
Johnathan Henwood as DI Young
Craig Deuchar as PC Milgram
Mathew Foster (credited as Matthew Foster) as Harry Dawkins

All Accolades & Coverage: 

Visions Festival 2013 - Official Selection

Conduit | Short Film (written and directed by Liam Cairns)
Submitted: July 21, 2020
Last Updated: July 21, 2020

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The Writer: Liam Cairns

I was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland in 1990. At the age of sixteen, my family uprooted and moved to London, United Kingdom where I completed my education. I originally aimed to study at university for a degree in physics but, upon discovering the film magazine Sight & Sound , decided instead to attend film school. I studied Film and Television Production at the Creative Arts school in the University of Hertfordshire, eventually completing a masters degree in 2015. For my thesis, I wrote and directed a spec script for a short student film entitled Conduit , as well as scripting another short spec entitled Mr. Midnight. I co-wrote and starred in a small cameo in the independently... Go to bio

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